Getting More From Your Supplemental Heat Source: Fireplace Tips For Homeowners

22 February 2019
 Categories: Home & Garden, Blog


Thousands of families have been affected by the extreme winter weather conditions that have occurred during the past few years. In addition to the severe cold, substantial amounts of snow, and dangerous wind chills, many found that the weather-related power outages also caused their family to experience periods without heat in their home. Adding a fireplace to the home as a supplemental heat source that does not require electricity to operate is a low-cost way for these homeowners to ensure that their families are able to stay warm and safe inside their homes, even during power outages. 

What to know before using an existing wood burning fireplace 

If your home's structure has a fireplace, but it has not been used in years, it may be possible to bring it back into operation. Before doing so, homeowners will need to have it professionally inspected and cleaned to ensure that it does not present a fire risk. If the existing fireplace cannot be brought back into service safely, it still may be possible to install an insert into the opening along with a fireproof liner in the existing flue to make it possible to burn wood safely.

If the flue has been damaged or closed off and cannot be easily put back into service, homeowners may still be able to gain supplemental heat from the existing fireplace by installing a vent-less gas fireplace insert equipped with battery-powered igniters. 

What to know when considering a freestanding wood burning fireplace

Another option for enjoying the supplemental heat produced by a fireplace in a home that does not already have an existing fireplace is to add a freestanding version. When considering this option, homeowners will want to choose a location for it where an insulated, fireproof flue pipe can be easily installed through the roof or routed through a nearby exterior wall.

In addition, lining the walls behind the fireplace with a heatproof material and adding a protective heatproof surface beneath it will be necessary to help lessen fire risks. Most home insurance companies, as well as fireplace manufacturers and installers, can provide recommendations regarding the materials that should be used for this purpose and the number of inches of clearance required for safe operation.

Adding a supplemental heat source to your home is a wise decision, especially in areas where winter power outages are known to occur. For even more detailed information about selecting, installing, and operating any type of fireplace to provide supplemental heat for your home, visit with a local retailer who specializes in fireplaces for sale